The United States Department of Justice, Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Georgia has charged Air Peace Chairman, Allen Onyema of money laundering, bank fraud, and financial scams.
According to a statement released by the Attorney General’s office in Georgia, Onyema, along with his airline’s Chief of administration and finance, Ejiroghene Eghagha has been charged to court for falsifying documents and money laundering.
Onyema and Eghagha were accused of moving more than $20million from Nigeria through US banks in a scheme ‘involving false documents based on the purchase of airplanes”.
The two Air Peace chiefs were investigated by the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Commerce, and Department of Treasury.
The US Attorney said: “Onyema allegedly leveraged his status as a prominent business leader and airline executive while using falsified documents to commit fraud. “We will diligently protect the integrity of our banking system from being corrupted by criminals, even when they disguise themselves in a cloak of international business,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak.
Onyema has denied any wrongdoing, saying the allegations are false and that the US government will find no dirt because he has never conducted business with any illegalities.
He said he has never laundered money nor committed bank fraud anywhere in the world as all the funds transferred to the US for aircraft purchase went through the Central Bank of Nigeria LC regime and all were used for the same purpose.
“I can confirm to you that all allegations are false and are in no way in line with my character as a person and as a businessman whose only aim has been to build Nigeria and improve wellbeing.
“As the press statement clearly stated, these are indictment that only contains charges. I am innocent of all charges and the US government will find no dirt on me because I have never conducted business with any illegalities.
“Be rest assured that I also have my lawyers on this and these mere allegations will be refuted. I have never laundered money in my life, neither have I committed bank fraud anywhere in the world. Every fund transferred for aircraft purchase went through the Central Bank.